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The Guardian - UK
The Guardian - UK
Daniel Lavelle

Edinburgh gallery invites public to hang their own art on its walls

A gallery assistant hangs pictures on a wall at the Edinburgh Printmakers
Sales, gallery and archive assistant Elizabeth Jane Campbell prepares the space at the Edinburgh Printmakers ahead of the new event. Photograph: Jane Barlow/PA

A gallery in Edinburgh has invited the public to hang their art on its walls.

Edinburgh Printmakers, based in a former factory in Fountainbridge, was the first open-access print studio in the UK when it first opened 57 years ago.

Its new event – Castle Mills Then & Now: Whose Gallery is it Anyway? – will provide a space for aspiring artists to showcase their work or curate other art pieces. The scheme will run from 19 April to 30 June and is intended to provide “a real-time, in-person interactive experience”.

It will accept artistic work in a variety of mediums, including paintings, printmaking, drawings, textile pieces, sculptures and performance art. The artists are expected to be drawn from schools, community groups and visitors.

A spokesperson said: “The rules are simple: anyone can add work and/or choose to co-curate the exhibition by moving artworks in the space in ways that make sense to them.”

The news comes after a gallery in Munich, Germany, revealed one of its technicians had smuggled in his own painting and hung it alongside celebrated modern and contemporary art, including by the late Andy Warhol.

The German newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung reported that the 51-year-old technician, whom the museum has now sacked and banned for three years, did it “in the hope of achieving his artistic breakthrough”.

However, one person familiar with the stunt said it was done to challenge the museum’s directors and to see if “they were prepared to practise what they preach. It was an artistic challenge. The technician who hung up the picture wasn’t lusting for fame.”

Edinburgh Printmakers has hosted works by Eduardo Paolozzi, Sam Ainsley, John Byrne, Victoria Crowe, Alasdair Gray, Rachel MacLean, John Bellany and Alberta Whittle, among others.

Ilaria Casini, its heritage engagement officer, said: “This exhibition will bring together perspectives and stories from Edinburgh Printmakers’ history and heritage. We’re looking forward to the conversations, artistic discoveries and celebration of creativity that lies ahead.”

• This article was amended on 15 April 2024 to correct the title of the exhibition Castle Mills Then & Now: Whose Gallery is it Anyway?.

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